This article was written by Ihu. Please do not add to it without the writer's permission.
Vradok Returns! is an epic, written by Ihu.
Kiridonia, moments after the events of Kreix's Task...
Mere moments after being defeated by a half-Toa of Ice, the being known as Kreix felt his atoms rematerialize into solid form. He was whole again.
"Yes!" he exclaimed. "I have made it! And I have what I...what Vradok needs."
In his hand was a small tissue sample. Unlike most, it was a deep red, the trait of organic Makuta tissue that once existed, but it was glowing, very faintly - the trait of an immortal.
"Vradok shall live again!"
In another chamber, close to the one Kreix was in, Reiax was busy containing the last cells of a great ruler. The conditions had to be perfect, otherwise the cells could die.
As Kreix walked in, a smile began under Reiax's Kanohi Keelahu. "You have it, Kreix?"
"Right here, my brother."
Reiax turned, and Kreix gave him the tissue sample.
"At last! We have the final piece in the great puzzle we know to be ressurrection!" Reiax chuckled. Kreix didn't.
With a small whistle, a tube shot out of the giant machine that filled the chamber. Reiax placed the sample inside, and the tube refitted itself in the machine.
"Your mask, Kreix."
"Your Kakama. It is missing."
Kreix sighed. "In the process of returning to Kiridonia, I was forced to leave my mask behind on Irania Nui. I'm sorry."
"Well...no matter! I shall create a new mask for you. Something different, this time."
A long silence passed over the two, as Kreix was suddenly lost in his own memories.
Reiax turned. "Thinking about Mydassa?"
"Indeed. I haven't been the same since her passing." Kreix said with deep sadness.
Reiax flicked a lever, and then walked into a large room next to their own. Inside, there was a myriad of Kanohi masks, all extremely potent in the hands of a skilled user. Reiax picked up one Kanohi, and walked back to his machine.
“Here we are, my friend,” Reiax began. “It’s only a temporary Kanohi. A Great Sanok, the Mask of Accuracy. It should prove useful in your next task.”
“Next task?” Kreix was surprised. He needed to prepare Kiridonia for the master’s return.
“Indeed. Ihu rejected the chance to join us…bring him to Kiridonia whether he wants to or not!”
Meanwhile, in the empty void of nothingness, a thought stirred. The thought rapidly became a mind, and slowly coalesced into an entire spiritual being. The being had a name, a name which had been lost to myth and legend. A name which would soon be much, much more.
Far from Kiridonia, in another system entirely, the great island-city of Irania Nui bustled about with the news that Toa Karael and the Iarn Military had found Onu Iarn, the mysterious ninth district. Whilst some saw it as good news, Turaga Lome did not. He had fought against the armies of evil 100,000 years ago to hide Onu Iarn and its secrets, and now Vashkov had revealed it to the universe. There was nothing Lome could do but let the lost city be unveiled.
“Turaga Lome, there is someone here to see you.”
Lome turned at the voice of Kukaro, one of his two bodyguards. “Send them in.”
As soon as he had said this, the doors opened to reveal the one figure that could mean victory or defeat for the Matoran – Toa Ihu.
“Turaga Lome! I need to speak to you – urgently!”
“What is it, my friend? Take a seat.”
A chair slid out and came to rest behind Ihu. He sat down, and laid his hands on his lap.
“I have just been fighting a being in the Great Forest, who calls himself Kreix. He claims to be one of the Disciples of Vradok.”
“Hmm…” Lome began. “I always thought Vradok was just a myth, but…”
A long pause ensued, as the Turaga thought about what Ihu had said. He could get Halok to investigate, but that would mean one less Toa in Iarn Nui to protect the city. So he made his decision.
“I’m sorry Ihu, but we don’t have the resources to start a full investigation into the possibility of a former Great Being on the loose. I’m sorry.”
“Ihu, Vashkov is still on the loose. As are Ozarii and Valorahk. I have to deal with them and any political issues that arise across eight very large districts. I don’t have the time or soldiers to spare! I’m sorry, Ihu, but if you think something is going on, you’ll have to deal with it yourself. Now if you’ll excuse me, a De Matoran was murdered last night.”
And with that, Lome strode out of his office, leaving Ihu on his own.
Well, not quite alone.
A figure materialized behind Ihu. A figure that had recently tried to kill him. A figure with a purpose. Kreix.
Ihu sensed his presence just at the last moment, because as he stood up, a wave of energy flowed over him. When the energy disappeared, he was no longer in Irania Nui. He wasn’t even on Aqua Magna anymore. He was standing in a large chamber in the fortress of Kiridonia. And he was chained to a wall.
Under normal circumstances, Ihu could have broken the chains easily. But these were made from an extremely hard substance from the depths of space, and no Toa or Makuta could break it. He was completely at the mercy of the one being he was slowly learning to hate, and about to watch a new, dark age be born.
Vradok’s time was coming.
In another district of Irania Nui, Makuta Gartheon and his Matoran partner Vesil appeared. They had just left the Makutaverse, on a mission of high importance. Irania Nui was a potential threat to the Brotherhood of Makuta’s rule, and therefore it must be conquered or destroyed. Nothing could stand in the way of the conquest.
“Here we are, little one,” Gartheon said to his companion. “You know what to do.”
“Yes,” the Matoran started. “Capture or eliminate the Turaga of Irania Nui.”
“Indeed.” Gartheon chuckled. “Now go!”
And with that, Vesil hopped onto a small speeder, and drove towards the island’s capital.
Far away from this, inside the body of a towering giant, a universe buzzed about with life. A new age of evil had dawned, as, weeks before, Mata Nui had been betrayed by his nemesis – Makuta Teridax. Now, Teridax ruled the universe, with his Matoran apprentice Ahkmou reigning over the city of Metru Nui. And at that moment, Ahkmou had made a decision, a decision that he announced in the great Coliseum, in front of the enslaved Matoran of the city.
“Metru Nui’s former Turaga are enemies of the Brotherhood of Makuta! Therefore, under the laws of the Makutaverse, they will be publicly executed!”
If Ahkmou had expected a cheer, he would have been very disappointed. Instead, the Matoran were shouting boos and hisses at him.
“Verminous Zyglak turd!”
While the Matoran shouted this, Ahkmou signaled to an infected Matoran worker to open a gate. He did so, and the seven Turaga – Nokama, Vakama, Matau, Onewa, Nuju, Whenua and Dume – walked into the open arena.
Ahkmou looked down on them with a grin. “Any last word, traitors?”
Vakama was outraged. “Any last words? I have plenty of words for you, you piece of…”
“We are proud to have defied Teridax!” Matau shouted. “We have defied him for over a thousand years…AND WILL CONTINUE TO DO SO!” It was at this point that all the Matoran cheered. All except for three Av Matoran, who had left there seats, and were walking down towards the arena gates…
“Are you sure this will work, Tanma?”
“Yes, Photok. It will. It has to. The Turaga’s lives depend on it, don’t they Solek?”
“Indeed, Tanma. Now let’s do this!”
The three Matoran reached one of the gates. The Turaga were still shouting their disapproval at Ahkmou, but another gate housing six Rahkshi was about to open.
They burst into the arena, flying on their jetpacks, towards the group of Turaga. Grabbing the Turaga, they flew away from the Coliseum to an airship, where several Order of Mata Nui members were waiting.
They had dropped the last Turaga when Solek turned to see that the Rahkshi were following them.
It was at that moment that Solek took control. “Tanma! Photok! With me!”
Once again the Matoran activated their jetpacks and flew out to battle the Rahkshi. They threw all their light powers at the Rahkshi. As beings of shadow, the Rahkshi fell easily. The Matoran returned to the airship.
But just as Solek touched down, and Staff of Poison was shoved through his arm. One of the Rahkshi had evaded the light blasts.
Solek let out an almighty scream of pain, and threw his blade straight into the Lerahk’s head. It didn’t have time to react, and the lifeless corpse fell from the airship onto the city street below.
Helryx rushed over. “Solek! Are you okay? MEDIC!”
The Matoran looked at his arm. It was blackened by the poison, but otherwise unharmed.
“That was a very brave thing you did, Solek.” It was the voice of Toa Gali. “Good job.”
Awakening from unconsciousness, Ihu found himself slumped against a wall next to Reiax, one of his captors. An alarm rang, and more beings entered, some of which Ihu recognized.
Kreix – the being who tried to kill him before; Nektann – a Skakdi warlord; Ragnor – a vicious sapient fungus that relied on host bodies. There were others, but Ihu didn’t know who they were.
Reiax began to speak. “Fellow Disciples! The time has come! The machine is ready, and our master can return!”
A cheer broke out, as well as a chant in another language Ihu knew to be Vorgese.
Reiax pressed a large red button, and the fortress began to shake. The chanting grew louder and faster, and the machine in front of Ihu started to glow. A large tank became visible, with a creature growing inside. A finger twitched. Then an eye opened, followed by another. The being began to unfold, revealing a Toa-like body, which was very similar to Frydax’s description of Angonce. This was a Great Being. This was Vradok.
Suddenly, the glass smashed, and the figure landed on the floor. His armour was a dark blue, with yellow plating in places. He wore no Kanohi, and his eyes glowed gold. A voice boomed from his mouth.
“I AM REBORN!”
The Disciples began to cheer even louder, and Reiax congratulated himself on his achievement.
“THE TIME HAS COME! A NEW DARK AGE HAS DAWNED! AND NOTHING CAN STOP ME! I…AM…VRADOK!”
On the airship, a Jyraxian healer called Jyralash was dealing with Solek’s arm. The Rahkshi’s staff had gone straight through, and severely damaged the appendage.
“How much longer?” The Matoran of Light kept asking.
Jyralash always gave the same answer. “Soon enough, little one.”
At that moment, Toa Helryx walked into the medical bay. “How is his arm, Jyralash?”
“It has improved significantly.”
Helryx smiled. “Good. That was a very brave thing you and your friends did, Solek. You could have been killed.”
Solek turned. “But we weren’t. And even if we had, it was a good cause. Where are we going?”
“A small island south of here. There is a being there that we may need the assistance of. His name is Tren Krom.”
For the first time in tens of thousands of years, Vradok could move his own body. He could feel. He could see. For a long time, he had been nothing. Now he was the most powerful being in the universe once more.
He had tried to return before, most recently in the body of Toa “Volatile”. But he had been defeated. He wouldn’t make that same mistake again.
He turned to Kreix, his second-in-command, the being who had strived for years to bring Vradok back. “Kreix, my student.”
“Yes, my lord.”
“Is the library still intact? Have the artifacts been placed there?”
“Indeed they have, my lord.”
Vradok chuckled. “Then everything is falling into place. I have only just awakened, and already I am on the way to achieving dominance of the greater universe!"
Deep under the surface of Kiridonia, Ihu furiously tried to break the chains which held him. They were no normal metal, as they glowed a strange mauve colour. He needed to get out and stop Vradok from leaving the planet. If he didn’t, the universe was surely doomed.
Then he heard footsteps coming towards him. Using his Makuta powers, he created a whirling ball of plasma and electricity to illuminate the darkness. The figure standing before him was Reiax, Vradok’s lead scientist.
“What do you want from me?”
Reiax smiled and walk closer to Ihu, moving so close that their Kanohi were almost touching. “It seems that you refused Vradok something that he wants very badly.”
“And what is that?”
Reiax’s smile turned into a massive grin. “An…enforcer…of your caliber. If you remember, Kreix offered you membership into the Disciples. The offer is still open.”
Ihu frowned. “You really don’t know me that well. I would never join you, even if my defiance resulted in my death. Not that that’s possible…”
“Exactly!” Reiax stepped back. “Why waste your energies on small fries like the Matoran! You could be so much more! Just follow Vradok’s call…”
Silence reigned, as Reiax waited for an answer. He finally said, “Okay, then. I’ll leave and let you chew it over. But I’ll be back in a few hours. Please make the right…”
Ihu seized the moment. Using all of his powers at once, he obliterated the chains, and sped through the open door. Reiax didn’t even have time to blink. All he could do know was sound the alarm. Which he did.
All over the fortress, red lights flashed and alarm bells rang. Vradok’s Disciples took up arms, preparing to fight the Toa that was on the loose.
From the top of his tower, Vradok too heard it. The alarm bells…so he broke the chains…we cannot let his skills go to waste…
And with that thought, Vradok leapt off the tower, Scythe in hand, to capture a particular Toa of Ice.
Ihu ran through the black corridors of the Fortress, various members of the Disciples of Vradok chasing after him.
He knew that he couldn’t keep running forever. At some point, he would need to find a way off the planet.
He rounded a myriad of corners, past a myriad of Vradok’s disciples. One of them, who wore a Kanohi Vahkya, tried to slam his club down on Ihu, but the Toa of Ice was too fast. But still, the being continued, stretching an elastic arm out around Ihu’s neck and pulling him back. Ihu pulled himself free using his own elasticity powers, and continued.
After more long minutes of running, Ihu turned to see a group of Vradok’s disciples behind him. He had to lose them. Speeding forwards, Ihu turned in mid-air, and used his magnetism powers to bring a metal bridge down on them. They wouldn’t be following him anymore.
Ihu resumed his running, and sped towards a small tower.
Yezu made his preparations. He was leaving Irania Nui. There was nothing left for him on the island. Business was complete Fader Bull dung, Gelik was too busy being a Toa to notice her own boyfriend, his neighbors were blaming him for damage to their dwellings after Ihu’s battle with Valorahk, and some were even blaming him for Lome’s disappearance.
He would take his old clunky Rapidera to Tehktra Nui. He had some friends there.
Yezu hadn’t told anyone that he was leaving. He was just going to go.
The Fe Matoran was halfway down the road towards his garage, when a ship passed by overhead – the SS Kalmah the Conqueror. At the controls were Gaz, an infamous Matoran pirate, and his partner Kesol.
The ship swooped down, wrenching the tops of Matoran homesteads off. A small hatch opened at the bottom and Kesol appeared. He grabbed Yezu, and before he could complain, he was far above the city.
Using his infinite powers, Vradok threw the unconscious body of Ihu out into the sky above Kiridonia. He would not affect Vradok’s plans now. Still, Vradok thought, what a waste. What a waste…
Back on Irania Nui, the council began their decision of who would be the temporary ruler of the island. Several Matoran had volunteered, but nobody could reach a definitive answer.
Suddenly, the doors flew open. “Hello, gentlebeings.” The voice was that of a De Matoran named Kelta.
“Kelta, what is the meaning of this?”
The De Matoran smiled. “Listen, and the answers will come.”
With that, a sonic scream erupted, deafening everyone present. The Matoran council were all screaming in pain, as the noise destroyed their ears. Except for Kelta.
The De Matoran just stood there, watching the carnage. “Shall we up the power?”
Then the pain increased. In seconds, all but Kelta were dead. Without them, nobody was up for leadership of Irania Nui. Nothing could stand in Kelta’s path now.
Laughing maniacally, the mass-murdering De Matoran shut the doors, and prepared his plans for domination.
The airship touched down on firm ground. “We’re here!” An Intellian navigator shouted. Here was the island of Tren Krom, famous for the being it was named after. Helryx walked through the rooms of the ship to the back, where the Order of Mata Nui’s newest recruits were waiting.
“Friends, we have arrived on what we will now make our base. Due to the immense power carried by Tren Krom, Teridax will be unable to find us.”
Vakama looked puzzled. “Tren Krom. But he is just a myth!”
“Not so, brother,” Dume replied. “Tren Krom is an all-powerful being from the before-time. Long before Mata Nui existed, Tren Krom ran our world. Now, he’s trapped here.”
Still confused, Vakama, sat back on his chair.
Next, Photok spoke up. “So, what do we do now?”
“We build a base, and use it.” Helryx drew out a set of blue-prints, which she handed to the navigator. “Take it to the City-Building Creature. He’ll know what to do.”
The Intellian did so. Just as he walked out of the room, a large hatch opened up in the floor, leading onto the beach below.
Helryx smiled. “Let’s move.”
Deep below the fortress of Kiridonia, Vradok walked into a huge chamber. A truly magnificent sight, it housed all of the artefacts that Vradok needed in his great plan. There were crystals, Kanohi masks, scrolls detailing the Pact, and so much more. It was a pirate's pay-day, if one could get past the guards and the traps. One such guard, Daktor, walked up to his master.
"Lord Vradok," he began. "It is truly wonderful to have you back with us."
"Thank you, Daktor. Tell me - where is the Runes section?"
“Just down the corridor and to the left, my Lord.”
Vradok chuckled. “Good.”
With that, he strode down to where Daktor had directed him. Sure enough, the Runes where there. He read a few of them, and then remembered something from his ‘trip’ to Jydivia.
The Makuta have turned against Mata Nui, he thought, which means that I may be able to enter unnoticed…
As a plan began to unfold in Vradok’s mind, he left the chamber and its secrets behind, heading for the one place he never thought he would need to return to – the Matoran Universe.
Amuga walked through the dark and dingy streets of Ta Metru. He needed to get back to his dwelling, where he was to meet with a Ga Matoran called Marka. They were going to try and get out of Metru Nui, and head for the islands to the south, where they might be able to find help.
He reached the front door when he heard a hissing sound. He turned to see a Furahk behind him, preparing to strike. One straight thought on the Rahkshi’s part and Amuga would be fused with the wall behind him. He didn’t move, hoping that the Furahk would pass and leave him alone.
Then the creature made its decision, and fired.
Suddenly, a shield of energy appeared in front of Amuga. A multi-coloured Toa dropped down in front of him, and sent a vortex of flame shooting at the Furahk, which fell back.
“Grab on, Amuga! Now”
Amuga did as he was told, and grabbed the Toa’s arm.
Suddenly, the Toa and Amuga shot off the ground, away from the Rahkshi and away from Metru Nui.
“Woah!” He exclaimed. “Who are you?”
“My name is Toa Hydros. I’m a member of the Order of Mata Nui, as are you from this moment on.” And with that thought, they continued their flight, towards a new chapter in Amuga’s life.
Vradok landed silently on the gigantic shoulder of Mata Nui. It was a truly magnificent sight. The robot that he and his fellow creators had built was still floating through space after 100,000 years.
Now for the easy part, Vradok thought as he probed out with his mind. He was surprised to find not Mata Nui, but a harsh aura of malice and evil, with a name – Teridax.
Well, well, well…now for the hard bit, then.
Reaching out once more, Vradok felt through Teridax’s mind, and pressed the mental nerve that would send him into unconsciousness. The giant did exactly as Vradok had hoped, and fell into a deep sleep. He didn’t fall, though – he remained upright.
Just as well, thought Vradok, and he entered into a realm of shadows. We can’t have him spoiling all of my plans, now can we?
Kreix broke free of his ‘chains’, and rose to full height. He had just lost a battle against a Turaga of the Green called Lome. And defeat was infuriating.
Leaping up the debris, Kreix returned to his speeder. It had been completely wrecked by the vines. Now, he would have to find some other way off the planet…NOT!
Opening his pack, Kreix pulled out a small, glowing device. As soon as he placed it on the speeder, it fixed itself.
“And now, to Kiridonia!”
Hopping back onto the speeder, Kreix fixed on his breathing helmet, and lifted off into space.
In the vast city of Metru Nui, night fell. Matoran had finished their labours, and were now resting in their dwellings, hoping that the Rahkshi wouldn’t come for them. The only beings that stirred were Makuta’s “sons”, and two Toa – Toa Lewa and Toa Tuyet.
“What do we do now?” The Toa of Water asked. “Surely a Rahkshi will notice us sooner or later.”
Lewa smiled. “Nay, Tuyet. My powers are far greater than that. They wouldn’t even notice us if we broke their necks.”
For this was not Lewa Nuva, Toa of Air. He had lost his body to Tren Krom, a being of the before-time, who claimed that he could help stop Teridax from conquering all of reality.
Suddenly, the ground shook, and a bat-like figure erupted from the ground.
“Yes, that’s me,” the Makuta said, drawing his shadow powers. “Now, who’s first?”
Just as he said this, a more powerful bioquake began. The night sky turned a deep blue, and a large being, not dissimilar to a Toa, landed before the three combatants.
“So, Tren Krom, you have finally escaped from your prison.”
“Vradok!” Tren Krom exclaimed. “You imprisoned me in the first place!”
“No, Tren Krom, it was Angonce who did that. I actually wanted you to travel with us. If I’d had my way, you would be one of the greatest beings in all universes. Possibly greater than I.”
The ‘Toa of Air’ stopped for a moment, before charging his elemental powers of Air, Psionics, and more. “I can tell when you are lying…my master.”
With that, he released all of his energies square into Vradok’s chest, sending him flying from Po Metru all the way to Ga Metru. Then, using his homing powers and teleportation, he materialised in front of his fallen creator.
“Very good, Tren Krom. You’ve obviously been practising.” And then, Vradok’s eyes turned a deep purple. Power crackled around his palms, as he summoned all the elements of this universe and others. “But you can’t compete with the master of all.”
He hurled the energy at Lewa/Tren Krom, but the being ducked, and the power flew past him, straight into a series of observatories and purification facilities. Power raced across the buildings, burning, meting, crystallizing, freezing, and obliterating them. The giant towers fell on one another, and descended in a large heap of wreckage and debris. And then, the final element exploded into life. A bio-nuclear eruption tore the pile of metal and nearby buildings into atoms, leaving only a giant mushroom cloud.
“You can’t even begin to compete.”
In the center of the island, at the Coliseum, Turaga Ahkmou heard the explosion.
Calling the Rahkshi, he sent as many as he could to the area of Ga Metru. They would deal with the disturbance.
Looking over his great balcony, Ahkmou saw the destruction. A huge section of the water district had been blown into oblivion. It was something that no Toa could have done.
There must be a new competitor for power in town…I must tell Teridax.
Reaching out with his new mental powers, he tried to send a message to the ever-vigilant Makuta. But he wasn’t there. Startled, he called Pyrez for a report.
“Why is Teridax not responding? Is something wrong?”
“Indeed. I do not know what, but I will find out. I guarantee it.”
Before Ahkmou could reply, the comlink went dead. He tried switching it on, but it didn’t work. He looked over the balcony again. All lights had gone off, and Rahkshi had stopped dead in the streets.
“It’s an EMP!”
It had taken only a portion of Vradok’s power to send out the Electro-magnetic pulse. A very simple trick, to him.
Everywhere, Rahkshi had stopped dead, the link between Kraata and armour severed. All of the lights across the whole island had gone out, as well as any other electrical appliances. Matoran were already getting out lightstones in place of the artificial light. Snow had started to fall, the minimal light creating strange shadows on the white substance.
“How…” Tuyet began, as she approached the to combatants. “Who is this guy?”
The Toa of Air stood upright. “This is Vradok, one of the Great Beings.”
“Formerly. Those fools only thought of creating, not of controlling, or even controlling their creations. Now, if you don’t mind…”
The blue-armoured entity leapt into the air, and his voice was carried across by the winds.
“I have a plane to catch!”
Meanwhile, on Irania Nui, Kelta sat down in his new office. Since Lome was gone, another Turaga – or Matoran – would need to take control of the island. And that was Kelta.
Outside, he could hear his two bodyguards murmuring to each other. Juuloc and Kukaro were fiercely loyal to their Turaga, but were not protecting Irania Nui’s new steward. They didn’t know that they were in fact harbouring something much, much worse.
Turning to the recently fixed window, Kelta pressed a button on his armour chair. Several holoprojectors shone an image onto the blacked-out windows (a new feature Kelta had fitted), and a voice boomed through small speakers in the back of Kelta’s chair.
“Master.” It was the voice of Gaz. “We have successfully collected the Fe Matoran Yezu, and apparently a being named Kreix has taken care of Lome.”
“Excellent. Soon, Irania Nui, and maybe even Aqua Magna, will be mine!”
De Matoran have exceptionally good hearing, so it was easy for Kukaro to hear Kelta and Gaz. Bursting into the room, Sonic Trident in hand, he smashed a holoprojector and the image disappeared.
“You’re working with Gaz and Kesol!” He shouted.
“Well done, you oaf. I knew you’d find out.” Chain lightning sprang from Kelta’s fingertips, and struck Kukaro in the chest. The force of the blow threw him back against a wall, and the lightning stopped him from getting up. He was dead.
“NO!” Juuloc sprang on Kelta. The De Matoran didn’t see him coming and fell flat on the floor. But he threw the Ta Matoran off, and the shadows began to cling to him. Growing to the height of a tall Toa, Kelta revealed is true form!
Juuloc stared for a moment, before throwing a dagger at the beast. It missed.
“Don’t even try to fight a Makuta. It’s hopeless!”
“Who are you?” WHAT are you?” Juuloc felt his anger build.
“My name is Tyrex. Makuta Tyrex,” was the reply.
Metal plates sprang off a wall, and Tyrex directed it at Juuloc. The Matoran ducked, and looked at the wall the plate had come from. It was Lome’s remembrance chamber. Ducking inside, Juuloc felt around for a weapon, but his hand met something else. A small crystal.
Light burst from the chamber, almost blinding Tyrex.
Where Juuloc had entered as a Matoran, he exited as far, far more. A Toa!
In a chamber under the Coliseum, three powerful vehicles lay in darkness. They had briefly belonged to the Toa Nuva, but now they were about to fall into different ownership.
The EMP had deactivated the Rahkshi guards, so it was easy for Vradok to infiltrate the chamber.
Using the power of Resource, Vradok fuelled all three vehicles, but chose to ride only one – the Axalara T9.
In the darkness of the Onu Metru Archives, Matoran of Earth laboured in the shadows. The EMP had shut down all artificial lights, so lightstones had been put up to illuminate the Metru.
Onepu walked through the giant corridors, looking at the various exhibits, now filled with defeated enemies of the Makuta.
He was just about to call for a speeder to take him to the surface when a wall shattered behind him. Through it came one of the ships that the Toa Nuva had used to escape the Universe Core. Now, it was piloted by a tall, blue-armoured being, carrying a Scythe. And he wasn’t going to stop for the Onu Matoran.
With nowhere to go, Onepu braced for impact, waiting for the end. But it never came, as a tall Toa in Brown armour stepped out and grabbed him. They flew through a wall, and came to rest in a pile of rubble. The Axalara was still going, but Onepu was safe.
“Thanks, Toa Pouks,” he said, rising to his feet.
The Toa of Stone just smiled, and ran back into the corridor, as fast as he possibly could. Pulling a comlink from his pocket, he alerted his team mates to the new enemy.
“Guys, there’s a being hijacking the Axalara T9! He’s headed up towards Ko Metru!”
Across the city, the six Toa Hagah heard this call, and readied their weapons as they prepared for what would be the fiercest battle of their lives.
Back on Irania Nui, Juuloc was falling. He had used his untested new Toa powers to throw a vortex of flame at Tyrex, but it had blown him through the newly fixed window. Now, he was falling to his death, and only Halok and Gelik would be left to stop the Makuta.
Heck, until five minutes ago, Gelik and Halok were the only Toa, Juuloc thought. I suppose there's also Karael, but he only ever follows cases about Vashkov or mutant Rahkshi.
Just as Juuloc was about to hit the ground, he activated his elemental power again, out of instinct. A jet of fire propelled him upwards, back towards the window, and the Makuta who was waiting there. As he reached his destination, Juuloc sped forwards, using his mask power.
My mask power, he suddenly thought. But I thought it was a Kanohi Pakari!
As if in answer, Juuloc’s muscles were suddenly imbued with incredible strength. He punched the Makuta in the chest, sending Tyrex spiralling backwards.
As the shadow being got to his feet, he unleashed a hail of sonic arrows. Juuloc had no time to dodge, and prepared for the worst…but they never came. They stopped in mid-air just in front of the Toa, spinning in their place, as if they were trying to dig through an invisible shield.
“Aki!” Juuloc laughed. “It’s a Kanohi Aki!” After 100,000 years, Juuloc finally realised that the Kanohi he wore was the Great Mask of Valor, which gave him the powers of Shielding, Speed and Strength.
Combining the two latter energies with the element of fire, the Toa commanded a tornado of heat and flame on Tyrex. The Makuta, unable to move out of the way, screamed in agony as his armour melted, and his Antidermis started to fry. Knowing that he had to escape, Tyrex used his final energies to teleport out of the city, onto a nearby space vessel.
When the smoke cleared, the Makuta was gone. Juuloc, unsure as to whether Tyrex had died or escaped, fell to his knees, exhausted after the furious duel. But at least something productive had come out of that experience – he was a Toa now.
In the vast reaches of space, the body of Toa Ihu slipped through an enlarged wormhole into BlueSpace. Even through a coma-like state, the Toa of Ice could use his mental powers to an extreme degree.
Landing slowly on a crystal beach, Ihu dissipated the wormhole, leaving the dimension enclosed once more.
After several hours, life flickered back into Ihu’s eyes. Many hours later, he was able to sit up again. Looking around, all he could see was blue skies, blue seas, blue, blue, blue…yellow.
Out on the horizon, a sapphire and yellow figure stood, watching the Toa of Ice intently.
Come with me…
The voice carried itself across the winds themselves.
Come with me…
The voice got louder.
Deciding that it was better to obey the stranger, Ihu got to his feet, and sped over to it. However, he tripped on an outcropping, and tumbled right down before the figure. In the crystal, Ihu could see that his mask and armour were blackened and twisted, with pockmarks everywhere.
“What happened to me?”
Ihu found himself being lifted to his feet by an invisible force, and placed gently on his feet.
I do not have the time to explain in words, so this will have to do…
Before Ihu could respond, one of the beings’ claws was on his head. In an instant, Ihu’s mind was filled with the new memories.
Corona Magna…Teridax…the treasure of Eternity…the three that must be one…
Now, Ihu’s mind was connected to the creature…the Caronex, Corbrarien…and he knew what he needed to do to stop Vradok. And he also knew how.
Gathering in the direct route of the Axalara T9, the six Toa Hagah fired their combined elemental energies.
Energy swirled in a powerful vortex, creating a Toa Seal, searching for the invader whom it would enclose.
But it didn’t. The elemental power dissipated before the Axalara, causing damage to the engines of the vehicle, but none to the driver.
On his feet, Vradok lifted an arm.
Gaaki looked to Iruini. “Who is this guy?”
Then his arm dropped. The Toa of Water and Air suddenly crashed against each other, energy chains trapping them together.
“Toa down!” Norik shouted, and prepared to strike the oppressor. But before he even reached his target, the muscles and tissue under his armour froze into solid iron, and the statue crashed to the ground.
Bomonga and Pouks, now enraged, prepared to destroy the ground beneath Vradok’s feet, but a strange light enveloped them. When the light died down, two Matoran stood.
“What the Karzahni?” Bomonga screeched. “We’re Matoran!”
“I can see that, you moron!"
Before Pouks could go any further, a hand crashed into him and sent him flying through the wall of a Knowledge Tower.
Bomonga used the distraction provided to activate the elemental powers that were still his to use, and created a giant crevasse beneath Vradok's feet. The being fell down into the hole, but didn't make a sound.
His concentration broken, Vradok's victims amongst the Hagah were restored to normal, except for Norik. Pouks emerged from the Tower as a Toa, and Gaaki ran to Norik's side.
"Brothers, quick! We must help Norik!"
Kualus walked to his Toa sister, and put a hand on her shoulder. "There's nothing we can do for him, Gaaki, except follow that...thing...and stop him from doing the same to, HEY!"
Surprised, the other Toa gathered around Norik's body. What Kualus had seen was small areas of red returning to the Toa of Fire's armour. Within seconds, he was his old self again, though he was unconscious.
"Thank the Great Beings..." was all Iruini could say, still in shock from the energy chains.
Just as Norik's eyes opened again, the figure emerged from the crevasse, and a voice boomed across the whole of Metru Nui.
"RAAAAGH! YOU TOA WILL SOON WISH YOU'D NEVER BEEN CREATED!"
Running into the midst of the battle, Tren Krom found a group of six Toa being electrocuted by Vradok.
Good thing I brought help...
Behind Tren Krom were Krakua, a Toa of Sonics, Tuyet, and a being named Frydax. If they worked together, they might be able to create some kind of elemental seal around Vradok that would last long enough for them to strike the definitive blows against him.
Throwing a Psionic blast at the Great Being that would have killed any other being, Tren Krom ran at his creator, slamming into him and hurling him at a Knowledge Tower.
Suddenly, the tower glowed red. Within seconds, the sky was the same colour, and the group of Toa realised what was happening - Vradok was attempting to take over the Matoran Universe. If they let him, the Matoran, Toa, Skakdi and Vortixx alike would be erased, and Vradok would take over the whole of reality in a matter of days.
Using all of his powers, Tren Krom flew to the top of the tower, whilst his land-bourne allies travelled up through it. All except for Kualus, who made a call to another group of Toa, whose help they would be needing.
When they reached the tip, Tren Krom and his amassed army, now consisting of three teams of Toa - as the Toa Nuva (exclduing Tahu and Takanuva) and Toa Mahri, plus a Toa named Hydros, had arrived - entered Vradok's energy-filled chamber. Channeling all their powers at once, the Great Beings concentration was broken once again, and the sky returned to normal.
"Well, well, well...there are now nineteen of you...that still won't be enough!"
And with that, Vradok released a huge blast of energy, blowing the Knowledge Tower and those around it into atoms. The heroes fell to the ground below, some injured, some not, but all regenerating their powers in order to try again.
Vradok emerged from the wreckage once more, and stared at the warriors. "You really do not know when to give up, do you?"
Suddenly, an airship crashed down in the Metru. Several beings jumped out of the vehicle, including a tall Toa of Water, a duo of Mersion swordsmen, three Av Matoran, and a giant form that all present immediately knew to be Artahka. The group walked towards Vradok, and the leader spoke.
"No, Vradok, we don't give up," Helryx began. "We don't give up because if we did, billions upon trillions would die by your hand. We have a duty to something greater than ourselves! A reason to exist!"
"Unity!" Toa Onua Nuva stepped forwards. "Unity gives us to power to continue! Unity gives us allies in our faiths and beliefs! Unity has won me and my team of Toa many victories against Rahi, Bohrok, Makuta and more. Here we stand because of our unity!"
"Our Duty!" Screamed Kongu, entering the inner circle of the heroes. "Duty is the reason itself! Duty is why we are here, and why we keep fighting! Duty brings its own rewards, rewards greater than anything you could possibly achieve by conquering, killing and destroying! Matoro followed his duty, and his reward was becoming a part of a world he saved! Our Duty is why we are strong, monster! It is the only thing you cannot take from us, and we will never give it up!"
"And...at last..." A giant figure spoke as he fell from the sky. Clad in white and silver armour, glowing from head to toe in a blue haze, and wearing a Kanohi Hau, he hovered mere centimeters above the ground.
Helryx was taken aback. "Ihu?"
"Finally, destiny!" Ihu began shouting at his adversary. "Destiny is the past, present and future! The lives of every being you see around you! Destiny is in our hearts and minds, urging us on towards a better tomorrow! It reassures us that what we are doing is right, that it is a just cause!"
Power crackled around Ihu's palms. Seeing this, Vradok unleashed an inferno of elemental energy that not even he could have parried, but it dispersed when it entered the blue glow around the Toa's body. "NO! IMPOSSIBLE!"
Ihu continued, even as his allies charged their energies. "Destiny is how we are driven, and what we are driven too! Without the guidance of destiny, our efforts would be hopeless, but that is exactly what we have! Our fourth virtue, in these dark days! Hope!"
Power raced across Ihu's body, and a telepathic signal told his allies to charge their powers within him. They did so, and Ihu started to glow many colours, as every element of the Matoran Universe became his through the power of Unity. Even in the depths of the universe, the message was heard, and Matoran everywhere concentrated hard to focus their minds. The chanting grew louder, as Matoran screamed it at the top of their lungs, all of them in time with one another.
Jaller, Pohatu, Hewkii and Nuparu ran out into the streets, egging Matoran on, shouting at them to scream it as loud as they could. Even Kopaka Nuva, the quietest of all Toa, was screaming his heart out, channeling his power through Ihu.
"HOPE TELLS US THAT THERE IS A TOMORROW TO FIGHT FOR! HOPE IS THE EXTRA DRIVE TO VICTORY! AND THE BEST THING ABOUT IT...THERE IS ALWAYS HOPE! IT CAN BE CREATED, BUT NEVER DESTROYED! NEVER DEFILED! NEVER DEFEATED!"
"Stop! We can make a pact! A PACT! Please!"
And then, the Toa of Ice stopped charging with power. His palms, followed by his wrists, then his whole arms, were shrouded into a veil of light. "You however...you can be destroyed!"
Ihu raised his arms.
"Stop! I'm begging you! Please!"
The gathered heroes started to cheer. "Unity! Duty! Destiny!"
Vradok fell back, as the chanting created a Psionic blast worse than what Tren Krom had done.
"Unity! Duty! Destiny!"
Looking up at his enemies, Vradok screamed. "PLEASE! STOP! LET ME GO!"
They cheered all the more, and Ihu spoke the final words. "Unity, duty, destiny...hope."
And with that, Ihu released the combined energies of justice, valor, wisdom, and unity, upon Vradok. The being screamed, as light enveloped him.
"NOOOO! I CANNOT BE DESTROYED! I AM FEAR, ANGER, SHADOW, RAGE, DEATH, DESTRUCTION, AND EVIL ITSELF! THE QUALITIES FOR WHICH I STAND CANNOT BE DESTROYED, AND SO NEITHER CAN I!"
Trying to stop the inevitable, Vradok attempted to channel his own powers through his Scythe, but a mere thought from Ihu sent into it oblivion. Vradok stared at his hand in shock.
"YOU CAN'T DO THIS TO ME! YOU CAN'T...YOU CAAAAAN'T!"
A wave of power exploded from Vradok's chest, blinding all present. The body of the Great Being tore itself into a trillion pieces, and each piece did the same. A scream carried by the winds swept across the whole of the Matoran Universe, nearly defeaning all who beheld it. Then, after many long moments, the scream burned up into used energy, and all that remained of Vradok was the memory.
The light died, and Metru Nui fell back into night. All was quiet, until a Matoran spoke up.
"Is it over?" Enquired Solek. His answer was the laughter and cheering of an entire universe.
Matoran and Toa alike celebrated their victory over a greater evil than any could remember. Taking full advantage over the time while Teridax was still in slumber (a slumber that was prolonged by the Blue Energy that Ihu brought with him), the streets were filled with the singing and the happiness of an entire world.
And in the middle of it all, in the heart of Ko Metru, one Toa was being praised above all others - Ihu, Toa of Ice and saviour of the Matoran world.
In the following weeks, the world inside the Makuta Teridax rejoiced. The Toa scattered across the universe, helping Matoran everywhere to rebuild shelters, and protecting them from Rahi.
Turaga Ahkmou sat in his tower, his empire on the decline from the peak it had reached before Vradok’s arrival.
Pyrez, Gartheon and the remaining Brotherhood members sat in the shadows, waiting for their leader to awaken from his sleep.
Irania Nui, the final test island of the Great Beings, stranded amongst the seas of Aqua Magna, was almost at peace. With an entire team of Toa now residing there, no evil could befall the state now.
Yes, Teridax would soon awaken and wreak havoc on the Toa, but Toa and Great Beings alike had weakened him. Unbeknownst to him, his time as the Great Spirit would soon be over, as the final pieces took their place on the galactic board. Events shifted, and the course of destiny changed in ways that no being could have predicted.
For the Toa, the battle against evil had almost been won…but not quite.
- Tren Krom
- Many Rahkshi
- Many members of the Disciples of Vradok
- An Intellian navigator
- The Irania Nui council
- A City-Building Creature
- A Caronex
- Two Mersions
- Mydassa (Mentioned only)
- Karael (Mentioned only)
- Halok (Mentioned only)
- Gelik (Mentioned only)
- Matoro (Mentioned only)
- Tahu (Mentioned only)
- Takanuva (Mentioned only)
- Every Matoran across the whole of the Matoran Universe
- As BIONICLE will be discontinued in 2010, Vradok Returns! will be the next fanon chapter for the whole of BIONICLE, not just the Irania Nui saga.
- In Chapter 9, Ihu and Vradok were both voiced by the User Ihu.